[According to a New York Times report, Angry Birds Developer Rovio turned down a $2.25 billion bid this past summer from Zynga. What's behind that decision?]
With over 500m downloads, Angry Birds is clearly a phenomenal success. However Two and One Quarter Billion Dollars is also a phenomenal bid. So ... if true, what's behind the rejection of this offer?
This isn't the first example of a Zynga offer being turned down. In July, Zynga lost a bid for PopCap, a mobile game company. Zynga offered $950 million in cash. PopCap eventually was purchased by EA for a smaller bid of worth $750 million in cash and stock with the potential of an additional $550 million if certain earnings goals were met.
One of the reasons stated by PopCap for this decision was concern about Zynga's reputation after hearing rumors of the company’s rescinding share awards and fierce internal competition. The story is that Zynga has been asking some early hires to turn in shares or face dismissal. Not something to warm the heart of potential acquisitions.
Beyond that, Peter Vesterbacka believes that Angry Birds is their "Mickey Mouse" ... characters with strong appeal that Rovio can build a 'Disney' size company and products around. That may be true.
Still, it's interesting to see how company culture issues can trump dollars. Something to think about.